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Mar 14, 2014 08:22 AM

Daniel. Yes or no?

My husband and I live in NYC, but are having one night away from the kids, staying at the St. Regis on 55th & 5th. I have a reservation at Daniel for this Saturday night, but am concerned about reports of inferior service to non-regulars / snooty wait staff. Should we still go, or is there somewhere else that we will be able to get into that will be a special experience? Many thanks!

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  1. For this Saturday? Anywhere that would be comperable or better is likely booked.
    My experience at Daniel is that is is somewhat the "old money" restaurant. I didn't find it too stuffy or rude though.
    That being said, the food was very good and it's certainly a luxury feeling to eat there.
    I say go and have a great time.
    Also, if you cancel now won't there be a penalty on your credit card?

    2 Replies
    1. re: Heeney

      Bizarrely, I was able to make the reservation yesterday - for 9pm this Saturday. OpenTable took my cc number, but didn't mention anything about a penalty if I canceled.

      1. re: manhattank

        Hmm. Probably because you caught someone else's cancellation in 48 hours.
        For the whole package of good food and a luxurious night out that's your best bet IMO.
        Have a good time.

    2. One other compliment I'll pay Daniel. It has two totally different tasting menus and you can order each one for your two top.
      That's what we did so it was a larger and better variety (assuming you were thinking of doing a tasting).

      1. I really soured on Daniel. One extremely bad experience is all it takes when you are paying so much money. I would definitely not recommend Daniel, but if you do go I hope you do not get treated as obnoxiously, negligently and haughtily as I did.

        I would sooner go to Le Bernadin at 5:45 or Jungsik at 9:30.

        My impression of Daniel is that some people will get very good service, most people will get good service, but they don't really care if you get crappy service because they are impervious to criticism.

        5 Replies
        1. re: Pookipichu

          I'm one of the people who got the crappy service. Never went back.

          1. re: Pookipichu

            Hmm. I'd go with LB too. If you are up for eating that early.
            Can't comment on Jungsik first hand. But I think that is probably more food focused and less on the luxury night out aspect. I heard the dining room is kind of dull.

            1. re: Heeney

              I've been to Jungsik twice. While the food is wonderful (delicious and creative), the service is outstanding, and the room is beautiful. Definitely a luxury experience.

            2. re: Pookipichu

              One would hope that after the downgrade by Pete Wells, they'd get their act together.

              I had a pleasant experience at Daniel the one time I went (many years ago), but CH is full of threads listing their bad experiences. Might be just the repeated comments by the few (not saying that's bad), but you don't really hear this from EMP, Per Se, Le Bern, and Jean Georges

              1. re: deepfry7

                I've been to all of the above, and I have never had anything but professional to exceptional service. Daniel was by far the most shockingly grotesque service I've ever received at a "Four Star" restaurant. A little snoot, I can endure, coldness I can endure, but they crossed a line and didn't care.

                I think you are right, that's it's very telling, out of the highly acclaimed restaurants in NYC, that ONLY Daniel has had reports of egregiously bad service, not to mention a write up about their bifurcated service in the NY Times. It's unheard of. I would not patronize them ever again. Not to mention bad experiences at Cafe Boulud and Bar Bouloud relating to mediocre food. I was in love with all things Boulud back when Daniel and Cafe Boloud were jewels of hospitality and perfectly executed food. No longer. Their ethos has changed.

            3. Daniel is one of three most favorite restaurants in New York for me. Food is great and service is professional. And I love the fact that I can order a la carte, which changes regularly so that I can always enjoy new dishes. Two thumbs up!

              1 Reply
              1. re: kosmose7

                Daniel is my favorite restaurant as well, along with Le Bernardin.

              2. I just went to Daniel and it was great. The waiter was friendly and fun yet could give me a run down on each ingredient and preparation. I think there was some mutual respect. Had the second tasting menu, and paid a la carte for the white asparagus special. Was there for about 6 hours. (does that not say it all??). The char with the Copain (pinot noir) wine pairing was the highlight. But the whole thing was superlative. I've seen the reports of being rude, so it is likely true for some people. But I've now been 4 times over many years, and it is always excellent and this last time was the best by far!